Hammer Strength Chest Machines Effective?

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    Question Hammer Strength Chest Machines Effective?


    I think i am going to have to give up lifting with barbells. The shoulder pain is becoming pretty extreme after a few reps. Also my gym doesnt carry over 120lb dumbells so im **** out of luck there. My question is are these hammer strength machines as effective as barbell or dumbell presses. I have used them before in the past just to mix things up a bit but i have never used them long enough to tell if they would be as effective as free weight presses. Thanks for the help bros!

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    Do you have a pre-existing shoulder injury?

    Instead of working around the pain why don't you try and fix your shoulder, heck man, you're only 21, you have plenty of time to get it fixed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PastorofMuppets
    Do you have a pre-existing shoulder injury?

    Instead of working around the pain why don't you try and fix your shoulder, heck man, you're only 21, you have plenty of time to get it fixed.
    No pre-existing shoulder injury. I only get the pain with barbell bench presses. No pain with dumbell presses or even shoulder presses. I have tried all types of hand placement and even experimented with bring the bar down to a different position on my chest. Nothing works. After 3 or 4 reps its nothing put pain in my left shoulder.
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    you should focus on healing your shoulder. what are you going to do, use the hammer strength machine for the rest of your life? a little patients will help your gains in the long run
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    i love the hammer strength machine especially the incline .. i know exnihilo agress with me ... if BB bench hurts then **** it don't do it .. you don't need to do it .. you can develop a phenomenal chest with db's and the hammer strength machine
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenihan
    i love the hammer strength machine especially the incline .. i know exnihilo agress with me ... if BB bench hurts then **** it don't do it .. you don't need to do it .. you can develop a phenomenal chest with db's and the hammer strength machine
    That's what I'm talking about. Until DC I had never even thought about using the hammer strength machines. Now I love em.
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    i've been using it for a long time now .. i really love the HS incline .. don't really love the regular or decline though .. just my preference

    btw natedogg i LOVE that bike .. i was in awe when i was watching that episode .. coolest chopper i've ever seen
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    The Hammer Strength machine is a great piece of equipment. I just implemented it into my routine.

    I had an old shoulder injury that caused me to lay off flat barbell bench for over a year. I changed my routine alternating from week to week to:

    1) Incline BB Press, Flat DB Press, Incline Fly
    2) Incline BB Press, Incline DB Press, Flat Fly

    I made sure to do slow, controlled movements, with a nice stretch at the lower part of the lift with the dumbells. This worked very well for me. I am now able to do heavy barbell press without any pain in my shoulder. I also sneak in two sets of bardips each chest days. I think this has really helped strengthen my delts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenihan
    i've been using it for a long time now .. i really love the HS incline .. don't really love the regular or decline though .. just my preference

    btw natedogg i LOVE that bike .. i was in awe when i was watching that episode .. coolest chopper i've ever seen
    Yep, the incline hammer press is good, but right now I'm doing flat hammer presses which are great too.

    The Black Widow is definately one of the best bikes OC choppers has built. In fact all three of their web themed bikes have been pretty nice.
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    I've always wanted to buy a hammer machine. I wanted one that you could use for incline, decline, flat, and for shoulder presses. Back when I used to read FLEX, I always saw the ads they had for some company that sold all kinds of hammer strength machines....but they were just too pricey. Anybody got a link for a cheaper one??
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    Here's what you need to do: Either go lighter for a while with freeweights or move to hammer strength machines for a while. In the meantime, do rotator cuff exercises. These exercises are more of a PT type workout so you only have to use 5 or 10 pounds with them. My favorite is to hold a 5lb plate, stick my arm out with my forearm pointing down (like automotive hand signaling "slowing down"), and rotate the shoulder up so that the upper arm remains on the same axis, but the forearm moves 180 degrees upwards. I hope I described that good enough. I just do a set of these for each shoulder in between bench sets and shoulder press sets.

    Also follow cuff's suggestion of improving shoulder strength and flexibility with dumbells for a while. Perhaps your chest has become too strong for your shoulders.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hypo
    Here's what you need to do: Either go lighter for a while with freeweights or move to hammer strength machines for a while. In the meantime, do rotator cuff exercises. These exercises are more of a PT type workout so you only have to use 5 or 10 pounds with them. My favorite is to hold a 5lb plate, stick my arm out with my forearm pointing down (like automotive hand signaling "slowing down"), and rotate the shoulder up so that the upper arm remains on the same axis, but the forearm moves 180 degrees upwards. I hope I described that good enough. I just do a set of these for each shoulder in between bench sets and shoulder press sets.

    Also follow cuff's suggestion of improving shoulder strength and flexibility with dumbells for a while. Perhaps your chest has become too strong for your shoulders.
    This is good advice, as I have this same problem too my man. Also, I dunno if your rear delts are lacking, but this can have a profound effect on helping eliminated pain. My teach is a Phys. Therapist Asst. and is currently helping me build some size and strength in both my EXTERNAL rotators (probably the ones you should work) and my rear delts. Oh, and i like dem hammer strengths too!
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    Quote Originally Posted by hypo
    Here's what you need to do: Either go lighter for a while with freeweights or move to hammer strength machines for a while. In the meantime, do rotator cuff exercises. These exercises are more of a PT type workout so you only have to use 5 or 10 pounds with them. My favorite is to hold a 5lb plate, stick my arm out with my forearm pointing down (like automotive hand signaling "slowing down"), and rotate the shoulder up so that the upper arm remains on the same axis, but the forearm moves 180 degrees upwards. I hope I described that good enough. I just do a set of these for each shoulder in between bench sets and shoulder press sets.

    Also follow cuff's suggestion of improving shoulder strength and flexibility with dumbells for a while. Perhaps your chest has become too strong for your shoulders.
    Since it seems alot of folks like the HS machines i am going to give them a go for about a month or so. I started doing some RC exercises about 2 weeks ago.I have always swapped out each chest day. One chest day use barbells then the other use dumbells. I have been trying to talk the owner of my gym into getting some heavier dumbells but he keeps using the lame excuse that noone can do them. BS i know plenty of guys that could use up to 150s . Gyms just dont cater to bodybuilders anymore
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    Quote Originally Posted by builtolast
    This is good advice, as I have this same problem too my man. Also, I dunno if your rear delts are lacking, but this can have a profound effect on helping eliminated pain. My teach is a Phys. Therapist Asst. and is currently helping me build some size and strength in both my EXTERNAL rotators (probably the ones you should work) and my rear delts. Oh, and i like dem hammer strengths too!
    Never thought about that because actually my rear delts are somewhat lacking. I will work on my rear delts a little more. Thanks bro.
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    The rotator cuff execises Hypo laid out is great to include. I did this as well, and made sure to do it prior to, and inbetween lifts. You will see results by doing this. My injury is over 12 years old, and I always had problems until I did the exercises and changed my workout routine. Now, I have no pain or discomfort (knock on wood).
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    That rotator cuff exercise is GRRRREAT!! It was an essential training tool for me when I was playing baseball. Just started getting shoulder pain tonight really bad while benching, so I too will be adding that now into my training again.
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    i cannot live without my hammer dip machine..no bench for me thank you
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    At one of the other gyms I used to lift at in juco, they had several different hammer machines. The only ones I ever tried was the hammer horizontal row, hammer incline, and flat. I loved the incline, I never tried it until the last 3 weeks I was at school, wish I would have started earlier, in 3 weeks I could tell a noticeable difference in my upper chest. I guess I just never tried it since I figured it was a machine, I usually stuck with all free weights. The gym I am at now has the hammer flat, I like it alright, but I would do anything for them to get a Hammer incline, I loved it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenihan
    i've been using it for a long time now .. i really love the HS incline .. don't really love the regular or decline though .. just my preference
    Word. I am a powerlifter and even I really like the hammer incline, that thing has an awesome groove that's just really fun Neutral about the flat and decline, IMO neither one is feels all that great. I loath the hammer shoulder press machine, that thing is the destroyer of shoulders - I do much better with an arched back close grip incline press.

    I'm a firm believer in just learning to flat bench properly (having impingements in both shoulders that bothered me for several years I can tell you that learning to bench properly and eliminating shoulder-isolation exercises works wonders).
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    Quote Originally Posted by exnihilo
    Word. I am a powerlifter and even I really like the hammer incline, that thing has an awesome groove that's just really fun Neutral about the flat and decline, IMO neither one is feels all that great. I loath the hammer shoulder press machine, that thing is the destroyer of shoulders - I do much better with an arched back close grip incline press.

    I'm a firm believer in just learning to flat bench properly (having impingements in both shoulders that bothered me for several years I can tell you that learning to bench properly and eliminating shoulder-isolation exercises works wonders).
    Is that you in your avatar? You and Me have about the same body type. Except im 6' 5.5" 251lbs with a 36" waist. I will take your word on that shoulder press machine. Today is shoulder day and i was actually going to try that machine out today. Hopefully after i lay off the benching for a while and continue to do some RC exercises i will be able to bench again.
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    I would take a break from lifting. You shoud see a shoulder specialist.When you start lifting again only do rehab exercises twice a week..Do your shoulders only hurt when you flat/incline bench? This book is a must for all lifters http://www.humankinetics.com/product...sbn=0873226518
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    Quote Originally Posted by az2u
    I would take a break from lifting. You shoud see a shoulder specialist.When you start lifting again only do rehab exercises twice a week..Do your shoulders only hurt when you flat/incline bench? This book is a must for all lifters http://www.humankinetics.com/product...sbn=0873226518
    Only on flat bench and its only my left shoulder. I have no shoulder pain on any other exercises other than this one. I dont see where i would have any sort of shoulder injury because it would hamper my other exercises as well. Today was a shoulder day for me and all went well. Did milatary presses with 225 with no problems on my last set. A trainer in my gym told me maybe i get shoulder pain because i bring the barbell down almost till it barely touches my chest. He said that may be the problem since i have long arms, that my elbows are going behind my back in the negative part of the lift and putting all the force on my shoulders. I was always taught to use a full range of motion and not cheat. The trainer sounds like he knows what he is talking about. Maybe i am getting too deep of a stretch in the negative part of the lift.
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenihan
    i've been using it for a long time now .. i really love the HS incline .. don't really love the regular or decline though .. just my preference

    btw natedogg i LOVE that bike .. i was in awe when i was watching that episode .. coolest chopper i've ever seen
    My damn gym only has the wide bench, regular bench, no incline! WIsh we had one since i loved it at my old gym in Ny.. I do also love the HS pulldown, and low row..
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    I dont like HS chest machines at all. The decline feels ok, but anytime I try to use the incline or flat, I just feel like Im working my delts. I dont think Ive been on a HS machine in like 2 years, maybe I should revisit them.

    BV
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    I'm interested in the form matter too cyber. I always bring the bar down until it touches my chest, and have pretty long limbs at 6'3". And like you I was also taught to always bring it down all the way and scoff at those who do half reps with shoulder exercises. But- there it also a tendency for the body to arch the back with heavy shoulder exercises to bring in the chest, which helps the push. Maybe that is causing your elbows to go behind your torso?
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    Have someone look at your shoulder positioning while you bench.

    I can almost bet that your painful shoulder is riding "forward" more than your non painful one.

    Since I am right handed my dominant shoulder is constantly and subtley trying to take away stress from my pec and take the brunt of the load by moving forward.

    As a test, take a moderate weight, start with your form with your shoulder blades "back" and your chest in a full stretch, as you tire your shoulder will try to compensate by shifting and pushing towards the stress.

    Or, I could be completely wrong and your form is perfect, this is pure brotelligence.

    Either way, like I initially said IMHO you should concentrate on getting the pain gone first and working out any imbalances that you may have.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PastorofMuppets
    Have someone look at your shoulder positioning while you bench.

    I can almost bet that your painful shoulder is riding "forward" more than your non painful one.

    Since I am right handed my dominant shoulder is constantly and subtley trying to take away stress from my pec and take the brunt of the load by moving forward.

    As a test, take a moderate weight, start with your form with your shoulder blades "back" and your chest in a full stretch, as you tire your shoulder will try to compensate by shifting and pushing towards the stress.

    Or, I could be completely wrong and your form is perfect, this is pure brotelligence.

    Either way, like I initially said IMHO you should concentrate on getting the pain gone first and working out any imbalances that you may have.
    I took your advice and got a trainer to watch me during my bench to check my form. We came to a conclusion that when i perform the negative all the way till i touch my chest my elbows are going behind my back and shifting the majority of the weight onto my shoulders . The shoulders are rotating forward in this bottom position accounting for my pain. I corrected this buy only lowering the bar to about 3" from my chest, which corrected the problem. I had no problems or pain benching like this. Hypo if you have ever had problems you might want to try this, even though it is not correct form.
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    Or you could retract your shoulder blades, tuck your elbows and arch your back like a powerlifter and get a bigger bench in the process (and not look like a weenie doing partials in the gym )
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